What's Going Around

Dan Moore, certified physician assistant at McLaren-Greater Lansing Internal Medicine, has been seeing several cases of poison ivy and poison oak this week.

Symptoms include an itchy, red, raised rash that often appears in lines or streaks. That rash forms blisters that break open and ooze clear fluid.

You may also have localized swelling and a feeling of warmth at the exposed area.

To treat poison ivy, wash the irritant off the skin as soon as possible with soap and hot water. Wash your clothes, too.

Take an oral antihistamine, and apply topical hydro-cortisone cream and calamine lotion.

A cool compress can also help.

It's a common misconception that poison ivy is contagious. It's not. The spreading of the plant oil is. That's why it's so important to wash the irritant off the skin as soon as possible.


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